Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Analysis paralysis

I love to think about garden projects, love to plan garden projects. Love, love, LOVE.

Especially in winter.

Is there anything better than sitting down with a bunch of gardening books, a computer, and a garden notebook? Researching plants, looking up pictures, sketching out plans, cross referencing height, water requirements, deer resistance, etc?

I love this so much that my husband will tease me that I like to think about gardening more than I actually like to garden. Sometimes I think he might be right.

But the other reason I spend so much time on planning is that I have such a hard time making choices about the garden. Should I put a row of blueberries here? Or would river birch look better? Or maybe this area should be incorporated into the meadow I am thinking about (key word: thinking!). By deciding on one option, I have to reject all the others. And for me, that is hard to do!

Another problem I have is that sometime I over plan. I develop a plan that includes every plant I need, down to the varietal. Then, if I cannot find these exact plants, the whole plan falls apart and I start all over. It is a wonder I ever get anything planted.

I don't have this problem in the vegetable garden, for a couple of reasons. First, I am not making a long term commitment to anything - I only have to live with the plants for a year. And as important, if I don't make a decision by a certain date, I lose my opportunity to grow vegetables. So, while I may dither a bit about the exact plants in the vegetable garden, in the end, it does get planted each year.

It is the more permanent plants that cause me the most anxiety. Right now, I am in full planning mode for spring planting and I am trying something a little different which I hope will make it easier for me to actually get something in the ground. When looking at how to plant an area, I am trying to find a few alternatives that would work well for the site. So, if I need some medium (3-5) bushes that work in a sunny, dry spot in my yard, I am trying not to get caught up in the one "best" bush, but instead to find 2 or 3 that I like so that I might have more luck actually finding one. I will let you know how it turns out.

Do you have any tricks to help you move from planning to action? I would appreciate any advice!

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